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The World Health Organisation's (WHO) focus for aging for 2015- 2030 is 'healthy ageing". Healthy ageing con-centrates on developing systems and processes that enable health and wellbeing as people age. To support healthy ageing the WHO recommends:

- Changing peoples' perceptions about older people

- Creating enrolments that are accessible and welcoming to older people

- Organising and coordinating heath systems for older people - Establishing systems for long term support for older people. (World Health Organisation, 2015)

As part of this, governments have attempted to structure aged services to make them more accessible, coordinated and organised

You are required to write an essay that discusses and analyses the way aged care services are structures to support healthy ageing. Your paper should include:

— an explanation of the healthy ageing model

— a discussion and analysis of how aged care services are provided that support healthy ageing

— an explanation of how aged care services have evolved and changed to meet the needs of older people.

Explanation of the WHO aging model

Healthy aging is an integral part of quality life in the older cohort of every nation in the world. The essay will mainly argue about the attributes harbored by the aged care services all over the nations to ensure quality living of older people along with longer life expectancy. Every person in every parts of the world needs to have equal opportunities to live long and healthy lives. Often, it is seen that the environments where people tend to live may or may not support good and healthy lifestyles that ensure healthy ageing (Beard et al., 2016). Air pollution, violence, inaccessibility to healthcare access, poor financial situation, low security, social exclusions, stereotypes and many others are some of the factors that might impede healthy ageing. Therefore, it is important for every nation to ensure creation of a living ground where older cohorts can feel themselves empowered, adapt healthy lifestyles, ensure their potential to personal growth, and contribute to society and many others. Therefore, the aged care services that need to be developed should focus on development of an important attribute in older people called functional ability (Hughes et al., 2018). This aspect is comprised of two components that include “intrinsic capacity” and “environmental characteristics”. The assignment will focus on these attributes and explain how they can help in developing aged services that meet the needs and requirements of the older citizens to ensure healthy ageing. Person centered approach, holistic care, health promotion programs, bio-psycho-social model of care and many others need to be active part of the aged care services. Each of the aspects would be discussed in the assignment explaining how they relate with healthy ageing. Conditions of the aged services on both the high income and low-income countries would be discussed to provide a view of the aged care services that are conducted globally.

World Health organization had focused on one of the most important concern in the present era. The concern is to ensure that older cohorts of every nation not only live longer lives but also lives healthier lives as well. Healthy aging model proposed by WHO mainly focuses on the development as well as the maintenance of the optimal mental, social and physical well-being and function of the older adults. This form of models would only work well when important achievements are made (Bloom et al., 2015). These achievements would occur when communities would be safe and there is promotion of the health as well as the well-being of the individuals. Effective use of healthcare services by the older people, respectful care, and easy access to the services, different forms of community programs, health promotion programs and many others would help in minimizing the complex diseases and prevent older cohorts to live poor quality lives.

Explanation of the key areas that the model focuses on

It is important to understand the significance of healthy aging among the older cohorts not only in the nation but also globally. Researchers are of the opinion that although they are living longer than they used to live 50 years ago, but the quality of the life had not developed (Beard & Bloom, 2015). The developing countries have faced increase in years to the life mainly because of the reduction of the child mortality and various other morbidities associates with childhood. Reduction of infectious diseases had also contributed to longer years to people in the developing countries. In the developed countries, the life expectancy had increased because of the decreased mortality of the older population. However, this had not assured quality living and healthy lives among the older population.

Poor accessibility and poor quality care in the lower and middle-income countries act as the main barriers for the older cohort of the nation living healthy lives. This had often impacted the functioning ability of the older people in the communities of the nation. Another important challenge that had also been identified is the inequities in health as well as pensions in the nation of United Kingdom that is a developed country (Prince et al., 2015). Researchers are of the opinion that older people living in the wealthier communities of the nation of UK are seen to live 6 years longer than the older people who live in the poorer communities (World Health Organization: World report on ageing and health, 2015). The difference in disability free life expectancy between the two cohorts was also found to be 13 years. Therefore, it can be stated that people living in the poorer communities, not only live for shorter lives but also live the shorter lives with limitations of their capacity. Therefore, poor economic condition and inequity become the barriers to older cohorts to enjoy quality health in their lives.

Different types of ageist ideas often stereotype the older cohorts affecting policy making as well as the emotional scars and mental issues among the older cohorts. Although, they contribute to the society in their one unique ways, often prejudices as older people being frail, out of touch, burdensome or dependent limit the developmental opportunities for the older people often segregating them as cohorts utilizing resources without any substantial output (Onder et al., 2015). This form of social construct can affect the healthy aging opportunities for the older cohorts. All these challenges need to be addressed by the concerned authorities so effective environment can be developed for them. In this environment, older people can reach their potential and enjoy their functionality to full extent.

Discussion and analysis of how aged care services support healthy aging

Older people are often seen to suffer from stereotypes as a part of their past and therefore, they are also overlooked in the surge towards their future (WHO healthy ageing, 2015). Therefore, the model needs to focus on some of the crucial barriers that older cohorts face to develop quality living in their latter years. The model need to ensure sustainable development and to achieve that, the initiatives need to address the unacceptable number of the older people living in the poverty and lack adequate income security (Romero et al., 2014). They also need to address the concerns like the threats that older people experience to their personal safety like that of the elder abuse and neglect as well as different forms of unmet needs in the disasters. The healthy aging model also should try to reduce the limited accessibility of the older people towards the healthcare and the social care.

The model should be focusing on the root causes that lead to inequity for treatment among the different cohorts of the older people belonging to various socio-economic backgrounds. Therefore, the healthy aging model by the WHO would ensure equal access of the older cohorts to the culturally competent and respectful health care and social care services. They should also ensure lifelong leaning for the cohorts along with opportunities for contribution to the societies. Specific considerations will be made to ensure that the environments surrounding the older people are accessible (Oliver et al., 2014). This would include homes, public spaces as well as buildings and even workplaces and transportations.

The concerned authorities who have taken upon the responsibility of development of the aged care services on a global platform need to keep certain important aspects that are unique to caring for aging population unlike to that of other cohort of ages. The aged care services that are designed need to be based on certain important foundation principles. However, not all the foundations of aged care services are followed effectively in all the nations in the aged care services. Firstly, the services need to consider the heterogeneity of the experiences in the older ages and these aspects need to be relevant for all older people, irrespective of their health status. Secondly, the aged care services should be such that it would address the inequities that underlie the diversity. Third, the aged care services should be such that it would avoid any form of ageist stereotypes and even different preconceptions (Jagger et al., 2016). Fourth, the services should be developed in ways by which it can empower the older people in ways by which they can adapt successfully. The services would be such by which they can shape the challenges they face as well as the social changes that accompany population ageing. Fifth, the services that should be developed should be evidence based and should align with the environments that the older person is seen to inhabit. Lastly, another important aspect needs to be taken care of during the preparation of the services for the aged people. The concerned authorities need to take into account the health from the perspectives of an older person’s trajectory of functioning rather than considering the disease and co-morbidity that they are experiencing at a single point of time.

Explanation of how aged care services have evolved and changed to meet the needs of older people

Three important arenas need to be included in the different types of aged care services that would be developed for the betterment of the living conditions of the old people. The first aspect that should be considered is to influence the functional ability of the older people in the different nations globally. This attribute mainly comprises of the different health-related aspects that enable older people to be as they are and perform activities that they consider valuable and important for them (Jokanovic et al., 2016).  The older cohorts of people can achieve this globally by empowering the intrinsic capability of the older people, ensuring maintenance of the relevant environmental characteristics and by successful interactions between the individual older people and these characteristics.

It is found that in the developed countries, some forms of importance are given on the development of intrinsic capacity of the older people. However, such importance is not given to aged care services in the developing countries as they are more focused on curative services of complex disorders only with very few initiatives for empowering of the older people intrinsically. Moreover, in the developing countries, no initiatives ate taken for environmental modification where the aged people live (Fairhall et al., 2015). Similar had been the cases of the high-income countries although present generation professionals are seen to advocate for the needs of environmental modification in developed countries.

  By the term intrinsic capacity, it refers to the composite of all the physical and even the mental capacities of the older individual. By the term of environmental characteristics, it refers to all the different types of factors in the extrinsic world that have the capability of being the context of the life of the individual old persons. These factors of the extrinsic world may vary aspects from both micro-level to macro-level. These include home, communities as well as the broader societies. Even the built up environment, people residing there, relationships shared, values and beliefs harbored, health and social policies, systems supporting them, services implemented and many others - all these should be researched upon and proper services would be implemented addressing each of the components for better living of the older-cohorts and healthy ageing (Baldwin et al., 2015).

The aged care services in the developing countries are limited to curative services provided to complex disorder and co morbidities. Due to lack of enough allocation of the resources in low and middle-income countries, long-term care facilities are maintained poorly and funded scarcely by the government. Understaffing is yet another issue that acts as high quality barrier in the developing nations. Poor funding also affects adequate training sessions for the professionals working in the geriatric wards and the long care facilities and hence the care provided is not evidence based. Moreover, in the developing countries, ageism stereotypes are quite high where older people are considered to be burdensome on the resources of society and hence, adequate funding is not ensured (Marino et al., 2016). Lack of skills and knowledge by the healthcare professionals working in the geriatric wards prevent them from providing person-centered care to the older patients in the public hospitals. Many of the studies suggest that when professionals have to handle more aged patients than they can, compromise in care quality is noticed.

In the developed countries, the present generation had witnessed many modifications in the care quality services that are provided to the aging population. Advancement in the medical science had increased the life expectancy and had thereby created a huge pressure on the healthcare centers of the developed nations. However, they have successfully identified the crisis period and accordingly policies and health promotions strategies are encouraged in the developed nations to help people age healthily. Unlike the developing countries that are only focusing on curative services, developed countries have been able to identify important factors that are important for ensuring satisfactory lives of the older cohorts in the nation. They have understood the importance of providing person centered care to the older cohorts and maintenance of the autonomy and dignity. Avery new approach that had become crucial in care in the developed countries is providing bio-psycho-social care (Broad et al., 2015). This approach had been found to be highly satisfying in treatment of the older people and to meet their needs and requirements. The health organizations had understood the importance of providing holistic care where they are taking into consideration of not only the biological determinants in the lives of the older cohorts that are making them suffer from complex disorders. They are also providing interventions and advocating for the social and psychological determinists of health like poor access to healthcare, low financial security, societal seclusion, depression and loneliness, low socioeconomic status and many others. Therefore, the developed countries are trying to meet the social, spiritual, physical, mental and emotional needs of the older cohorts to ensure healthy living. However, not all healthcare domains are funding adequately for effective training of the geriatric healthcare professionals as well as community-based services. The government needs to be aware of the importance of ensuring functional ability of the older citizens and make the nation a better pace for the older people by modifying the environmental factors aligning with their needs (Cesari et al., 2016).

One of the most important aspects that are focused on by the healthcare professionals during caring for the older people is the individual empowerment. Although the developing countries are yet not accustomed for treating old people with such approach, the developed countries had realized its importance. Evidence based practices had helped the healthcare professionals to identify the important attributes that ensure mental and emotional stability of the older people ensuring them to feel empowered. The older people put much effort on their respective role and identity in the communities, harbor meaningful relationships, possibility of the environments. They also want to enjoy autonomy where they need to feel independent and should be able to make their one decisions. They need to feel secure and should gain the potential for personal growth (Howdon & Rice, 2018).

The healthcare service delivery in the developed countries tends to follow person-centered approach for meeting the mental, spiritual and emotional need for healthy aging and quality life development for the older people (Baldwin et al., 2015). Person-centered care ensures that healthcare professionals keep the aged people in the centre of the decision-making regarding their care plans. This approach encourages their active participation in their own care. This makes them feel empowered and the power issues that older people mainly face with the professionals tend to get reduced (Brinda et al., 2015). Therefore, they are found to be more compliant with the services and tend to remain satisfied.

Moreover, the community and long-term care facilities not only provide importance to only the clinical and pharmacological care to the older patients.  They are seen to provide equal importance of their feeling of freedom so that they gain the potential for personal growth. Therefore, several important arenas are also introduced for modification of the environment where the older cohorts reside (Boyd et al., 2016). Developing enough space for helping them to move around, build and maintain effective relationships, meet their own basis needs are some of the areas where professionals are putting more significance for healthy aging. They are also given full scopes and support to develop knowledge, grow and make their own decisions and contribute to the society.

The health promoters in the developed countries are gradually realizing the significance of the person-environment fit. Effective advocacy of the health promoters to the government has been seen to help the aged population to voice out their needs and requirements to the government. The health promoters have correctly been able to identify the dynamic and interactive nature of the relationships between the older people and the environment where they survive (Henwood et al., 2014). They are also seen to advocate about the societal needs and resources and the changes that occur in the people and the places over the time. Accordingly, the government is requested to develop policies and strategies that would enable the older population to live in ways by which they can enjoy freedom and attain full potential for contribution to the society.

Another very important arena, which had also influenced the healthy aging in the developed countries, is health promotion programs organized in the communities. Health promotion can be defined as the procedures that enable people in increasing their control over as well as the improvement of their health (Wakerman et al., 2017). Different types of health promotion programs are now arranged in different nations by targeting the older citizens of the nations. This helps in promoting their well-being and encouraging them to maintain healthy lifestyles as well as prevention of the disorders, illness and even injuries. Such programs also helps in modification of the environments to support the health and well being of the older people along with the reduction of the personal, economic and even the social harms (Comans et al., 2016). This can be explained. Cardiovascular disorders, osteoarthritis, obesity, diabetes are some chronic disorders which impact the quality of life of the older people. Therefore, health promotions programs are arranged in communities to make them aware of the risk factors and provide ideas about the initiatives they need to take for preventing the occurrence of the disorders. Good diet, regular exercises, regular screening and tests, active lives and any others are encouraged for healthy aging as they reduce chances of occurrence of disorders. Developing health literacy by educating them about the negative health behaviors had been one of the most important ways of promoting healthy aging among the older cohorts. Use of pamphlets, social media, advertisements, community programs and many others are some effective ways of promoting healthy aging and had been adopted by many developed countries (Kobayashi et al., 2015).

Conclusion:

The aged services need to be developed in the nation in ways by which it can not only provide curative services for complex disorders. The services should promote healthy aging among the older citizens of the nation ensuring them to live quality lives as long as they survive. However, developing countries do not exhibit any form of preventative services and are mostly curative in nature. Funding is quite low which had affected the aged-care service delivery systems in the nation. However, the developed countries have understood the importance of tackling the social, economical as well as psychological determinants of health that affect the healthy aging procedures of the older people. Therefore, the geriatric services that they have developed have ensured person centered approach. Placing older people as active participants in their own healthcare empowers them and makes them responsible for their own health. These have positive outcomes on their health, as they feel respected. The healthcare professionals advocate their needs and requirements to the government and accordingly strategies, momentary schemes, benefits and other forms of support services had been developed. Not only that, various policies had been also developed with aims for promoting healthy ageing among individuals. Health promotion campaigns had been developed for empowering the old people with health literacy.  Overcoming ageism stereotypes, removing inequity and other issues need to be handled effectively through effective policy development. When all the above mentioned attributes would be included in the aged services, healthy ageing and high quality life can be ensured to the older cohort of all the nations.

References:

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